2019 Kia Optima: Minor Facelift Brings Infotainment And Trim Upgrades

Kia unveiled the 2019 Optima in Korea back in January. Two months later it was shown in Geneva, and now it’s on display at the 2018 New York Auto Show, dressed in US clothes.

It may not be the brand’s most exciting premiere in the ‘city that never sleeps’, as that place is reserved for the K900 flagship sedan, but the 2019 Kia Optima does get a few important upgrades.

What different about this 2019MY?

The entry-level LX sits on 16-inch alloy wheels, benefits from Stinger-like LED DRLs and has a matte gray-finished grille, whereas the S gets new fog lamps, LED taillights, glossy black exterior trim, dual exhaust tips and others.

For the other mid-range grade, the EX, Kia has prepared new 17-inch alloy wheels, in addition to refreshed leather seating surfaces and front heated seats. Smart Cruiser Control with ‘stop-and-go’ is standard, as are the fog lamps, LED taillamps and dual exhaust pipes, while the heated steering wheel and ambient multi-color interior lighting are optional extras.

New LED fog lights, sport steering wheel, smart cruise control and 18-inch wheels are offered at no extra cost on the SX and SXL. These flavors can be had with optional ‘European-styled’ red and black two-tone leather seats, panoramic roof, Harman Kardon sound system, UVO link with navigation, heated steering wheel, glossy black door pillars and side moldings and sporty bumper with LED fog lights. The SXL adds a two-tone bronze and black interior with Nappa leather seats, as options.

Any tech upgrades?

Yes, the infotainment has been updated for the 2019MY and features Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and voice recognition. The system is standard on the LX, while the S and EX get on-demand diagnostics, maintenance alerts, alarm notifications, speed alerts and others. Navigation is available on the EX with Premium Package and standard on the SX and SXL.

Finally, all versions of the 2019 Kia Optima get a suite of driving assistance items at no extra cost, such as the forward collision avoidance assist, forward collision warning, driver attention warning, lane keep assist and lane departure warning.

Kia will produce the 2019 Optima in West Point, Georgia, just like the pre-facelifted version. Pricing and other details will be announced later this year, when it goes on sale, but don’t expect the Estate on this side of the pond, as it remains a forbidden fruit.

more photos...
Can An Old, $22k Porsche Cayenne Turbo Take On The Tesla Model X?

The Model X is very fast, but if someone can stand against it, it’s a Cayenne Turbo – even if it’s 7 years old.

It’s Hard To Miss This Rock, Yet Drivers Keep Hitting It

The boulder is located in a parking lot at N 156th St in Omaha and has already become a tourist attraction.

Lamborghini Exec Says Urus “Performante” Could Happen

Lamborghini’s technical director all but confirmed an even more extreme Urus is on the way.

New BMW M135i Fights Understeer, Beats VW Golf R, Audi S3 At The Track

BMW’s new hot hatch was, however, almost a second slower than the Mercedes-AMG A35.

Lamborghini’s Urus Rescue Car Can Save Us Anytime

When it comes time to rescue a Huracan from a snowbank, a standard Urus simply won’t do.

Toyota Century Convertible Bows At Emperor Naruhito’s Coronation Ceremony

The one-off Century Convertible took the Emperor on a winding route through the streets of Tokyo.

Ford Capri To Make A Return? “Who Would Not Want That?”, Says Design Chief

Sure, Ford would love to resurrect the Capri, but says it must fit in with the modern era’s zeitgeist .

Porsche 911 Turbo Confirmed For 2020, Turbo S Will Have 641 HP

The redesigned 911 Turbo S will reportedly accelerate from 0-60 mph in 2.5 seconds.

VW On Track To Launch A Fully Autonomous Vehicle By 2025

Volkswagen is planing to launch an assortment of robo taxis and robo vans.

Maserati Creates One-Off GranTurismo Zeda To Mark End Of GranTurismo And GranCabrio Production

After a short hiatus, an all-new GranTurismo will arrive in 2021.